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Education news and issues in the Ozarks.

Tuition and Fee Hikes Approved for MSU

Scott Harvey
MSU's Administration Building, Carrington Hall/Credit: Scott Harvey

Students attending Missouri State University this fall will pay higher tuition and fees, following approval Thursday by the Board of Governors. KSMU’s Scott Harvey has the details.

Undergraduates who are Missouri residents will pay roughly $4 extra, or $204 per credit hour for regular instruction courses. Out-of-state students will see an $8 bump to $420 per credit hour. In and out-of-state fees for graduate students will increase $5 and $10 per credit hour, respectively.

Don Simpson, associate vice president for Enrollment Management at Missouri State, says that cost hikes are the result of increased expenses, and are meant to maintain university services.

“The cost of everything is going up – utilities, transportation, upkeep – And it’s just our attempt to keep up with the rest of the world in terms of what it takes to run the university,” Simpson said.

Under the Missouri Higher Education Student Funding Act (HESFA), MSU says tuition and required fees cannot be increased by more than the Consumer Price Index for students, which for FY 2014 is 1.7 percent. However, the school says additional enrollment fees are allowed under HESFA since they support specific college or program initiatives. So students taking certain courses in colleges of Arts and Letters, Business, and Health and Human Services will experience some fee increases.

Hikes in student services fees, room and board were also approved Thursday by the Board of Governors, which includes a four percent jump in board rates.  

Here’s the full breakdown of tuition and fees

Simpson says despite a record enrollment for the spring semester, the increase wasn’t big enough to impact the decision to increase fees.

News of the tuition hike comes as Missouri lawmakers are still deciding how much money to allocate for colleges and universities for the 2014 fiscal year, which begins in July.

“That’s always a balancing act, sure. That’s a tough call. But on the other hand the administration is always trying to get the information out there as soon as they can so the students out there registering for future semesters know what they’re gonna be charged,” Simpson said.

The average cost for a student attending Missouri State University for the current fiscal year, according to the school’s website, is $6,792. The online figures show that’s $600 less than the average four-year public institution in Missouri, and nearly $2,000 less than the national average. MSU says with the tuition hike for this fall, they’ll remain below the national average.

The last time Missouri State increased tuition was at this time last year, when the cost for an undergraduate who lived in the state went from $194 to the current $200.48 per credit hour. For a period of three years, from the 2008-2009 through 2010-2011 academic years, that price remained at $186.

Registration for the fall semester at Missouri State begins April 1.